Thanks to Kitty Marimba we’re able to get a look inside Art’s Magic Band Scrapbook. Well, it was actually Art’s mother, Jay, who took most of the photographs and put them in an album but it’s now in Art’s possession. Jay herself does appear in a couple of the photographs. I have done what I can to tidy up the scans and to enhance the faded colours of the original photographs. However, they are what they are  … but it’s a rare glimpse of life on the road with the Magic Band during 1971 and 1972 … I hope you enjoy them. To fit themRead More →

The Radar Station is pleased to present this fascinating article by Art Tripp, aka Ed Marimba, aka Ted Cactus, drummer and percussionist for both Zappa’s Mothers of Invention and Beefheart’s Magic Band. Here he gives his take on what it was like to work for both these very different musical geniuses. Thanks to Kitty Marimba for helping to make this happen. ————————————————————————————— Zappa vs. Beefheart: What Were They Really Like? by Art Tripp “Hi, Art, this is Dick Kunc here. I was telling Frank about you, and we’re wondering if you could come down to Apostolic Studios on Friday?” “Sure, Dick. What should I bring:Read More →

TROPICAL HOTDOG NIGHT: attention all Captain Beefheart fans!! Sorry for the short notice, but catch this if you can Tonight Sun. March 22nd Gary’s old friend Dutch producer and Zappa-Beefheart go-to-guy Co De Kloet is broadcasting a big chunk of “The World of Captain Beefheart” concert he mounted at the Paradiso Amsterdam a few years ago — featuring Gary and the 65-piece  Metropole Orkest, Nona Hendryx, Jolene Grunberg, Tom Trapp and others–on his national Dutch radio NPO program Co Live! The show begins tomorrow at 6pm UK time, 7pm Dutch time, 1pm EST. Listen live through this link: https://www.nporadio2.nl/so…/online-radio-luisteren/gedraaid Or you can find the show on their website: https://www.nporadio2.nl/soulenjazz/programmas And you can find the podcast here:Read More →

Whilst the Michael Werner Gallery has an exhibition devoted to Don’s paintings another of his works is also on display as part of a group exhibition. This exhibition is called “Valley of Gold: Southern California and the Phantasmagoric” and includes work by Man Ray and Marcel Duchamp. According to the publicity from the gallery: Valley of Gold explores the aesthetic legacy of the European surrealists and others who worked with similar sensibilities on the art of Southern California. Examining the influence of this charged period, the exhibition traces how its effects percolated through later movements such as California abstraction, conceptual art, and Light and Space.Read More →

Updated: 4 March 2020 It’s been a while since there has been an exhibition of Don’s artwork. If you’re lucky enough you can catch this latest show called Don Van Vliet: Parapliers the Willow Dipped, Paintings 1967-1997 at Michael Werner’s Gallery in New York. Venue: Michael Werner 4 East 77th Street New York, NY 10075 Date: 31st January – 11th April (extended from original date of 31st March) Monday to Saturday 10am – 6pm There is also a pre-show reception on 30 January (6pm – 8pm) which will feature Nona Hendryx. Presumably Nona will be performing some of her Beefheart covers.   If you can’tRead More →

A beat by beat dissection of this song from Lick My Decals Off Baby. For the past few years musician Tony Malone and his Beefheart Project Toronto have been working on covers of many of Don’s songs from across all his albums. Their intention was to be respectful to the originals as possible but present them in a different way. To understand how to play the songs Tony had to deconstruct them by stripping them down to each beat, riff and rhythm. The band then learned their parts and reconstructed the song. To give an idea of the work involved in the original composition ofRead More →

The Radar Station was recently contacted by Travis Dean who told us he had a number of pieces of Victor Hayden’s artwork. As we’re always interested to see Victor’s art we asked him to send along some photos of his collection. So below for your delectation here are examples of two of Victor’s styles – the abstract swirl type and those with the strange figures that inhabit his paintings. Click on the thumbnails for larger images. What’s more Travis said he was looking to sell these. So if you’re interested you can contact him direct at travisdeanseattle@yahoo.com or +12536786630 Please note: The Radar Station hasRead More →

It’s good to see that some people have taken the time to acknowledge Trout Mask’s 50th anniversary. Here we have two online radio shows, both available on Mixcloud,  taking different approaches to celebrating the greatness of the band’s landmark album. Both are well worth a listen. Firstly we have the London based Resonance FM. The host discusses the album with Beefheart biographer, Mike Barnes and the show is described as: Freewheeling music series with Ivor Kallin. This week we celebrate fifty years since the release of Captain Beefheart’s Troutmask Replica, with special guest Mike Barnes, author of the seminal work on the good captain. ExpectRead More →

Classic Live Recordings From the 1960s & 1970s A cynical attempt to get fans to buy copies of boot CDs they’ve probably already got! It’s a ‘4 CD Set’ of three previously released albums with exactly the same packaging. All that’s happened is that a thin card box has been printed up and the three albums have been shoved inside. So what you have here is: Full Moon in Cowtown – Live 1974 Radio Broadcast Plastic Factory – Avalon Ballroom, San Francisco 1966 plus bonus tracks The Muffin Man Goes to College – Rhode Island 1975 Bongo Fury Tour Follow the links above if youRead More →

Song List Nowadays A Woman’s Gonna Hit A Man Abba Zaba Hot Head Ashtray Heart Dirty Blue Gene Best Batch Yet A Carrot Is As Close As A Rabbit Gets To A Diamond Doctor Dark Bat Chain Puller Sheriff of Hong Kong Kandy Korn Big Eyed From Venus Cover blurb: Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band toured Europe and North America to promote their critically acclaimed album, Doc At The Radar Station. This would be their final tour together. A year later, Don Van Vliet aka Captain Beefheart, turned his back on the music business to focus on painting. Broadcast live by CBC at theRead More →

For many people on the first listen Trout Mask Replica just sounds awful. For those of us that grow to love it, it’s a masterpiece. If you don’t entirely get it yet, this 10 minute feature video from Vox nicely picks apart what’s going on and why so many of us consider it to be uniquely special. If you enjoy this and want something more in-depth then have a look at Samuel Andreyev’s analysis of Frownland and his extended conversation with John French.  Read More →

Liverpool’s Bluecoat Gallery continue their support of all things Beefheart with a special event to mark Trout Mask Replica’s 50th anniversary. Beefheart biographer Mike Barnes will be leading a discussion about the album and artist Derek Tyman will be creating a scale model of the Trout House! Bluecoat Artistic Director Bryan Biggs chairs the event, which continues Bluecoat’s relationship to Beefheart, from his first ever exhibition of paintings at the venue in 1972 to a special weekend in 2017 that explored him as a ‘total artist’ who embraced music, art, writing and performance. The event is on Sunday 16th June 2019. For more details andRead More →

May 11 – June 8, 2019 • Fast & Bulbous: The Art of Victor Hayden, curated by Anthony Ausgang Lisa Derrick Fine Arts will be presenting Fast & Bulbous, an exhibition of drawings and paintings by Victor Hayden (1948-2018), aka The Mascara Snake, with an opening reception May 11, 2019, from 6pm to 9pm. The gallery is located at 961 Chung King Road, in Los Angeles Chinatown. Victor was an ephemeral member of The Magic Band (Don and he were cousins). He contributed both art and music to Trout Mask Replica and  also painted the artwork on the cover of the band’s 1974 release BluejeansRead More →

There are not many opportunities these day to hear Don’s music played live but luckily there are a few musicians out there keeping the flame alive. Here’s a couple of chances to experience this music live, one in the US and one in the UK. UPDATE: Gary has contacted us to say that the Cutting Room gig has had to be POSTPONED. We will post details when it is rescheduled. Gary Lucas is presenting his THE WORLD OF CAPTAIN BEEFHEART show featuring legendary soul diva Nona Hendryx (Labelle) on vocals. You can catch this in NYC at The Cutting Room 44 East 32nd St onRead More →

One of the great pieces of footage showing the band at full throttle is their performance of I’m Gonna Booglarize You Baby on the German TV music programme Beat Club back in 1972. Then in 2012 The Lost Broadcasts DVD revealed footage form the complete studio session – a couple more run throughs of Booglarize plus versions of Click Clack (twice), Golden Birdies, Steal Softly Thru Snow and Rockette Morton’s Bass Solo. Amazing picture and sound quality! Now, the Beat Club YouTube channel has revealed even more footage from that session. Sadly there are no more songs. But what we do have here is theRead More →

That Petrol Emotion Hot Head 1988 UK 12″ Cellophane / Think of a Woman / Hot Head on Virgin Records VST 1116 see also Fast ‘n’ Bulbous Tribute Album Zig Zag Wanderer 1985 UK 12″ Keen / A Great Depression on a Slum Night / Zig Zag Wanderer on Pink Records PINKY 13T The Three Johns Moonlight on Vermont 1988 UK vinyl The Death of Everything on Trance Records 1988 UK CD The Death of Everything on Line Records TCDD 9-00671 One of the Johns was Jon Langford, founder of Leeds punk legend The Mekons, who de-camped to Chicago and are still performing. Another Beefheart connection is that he played withRead More →

  Sacred Cowboys Click Clack 2008 Australia CD Nailed to the Cross 1982-85 on Savage Beat/Loaded Skull Discs SB/LSD001 This track was only released as part of this 2CD retrospective but was recorded back in 1983 as part of a live set played at the Seaview Ballroom and broadcast on radio The Sacred Cowboys played a tough rock tinged with country and were part of the healthy Aussie scene that also included The Scientists and The Beasts of Bourbon.   Satantango Clear Spot 2004 Italian CD Mr Bore on Wallace Records wallace 53 Included on as this CD as track 0, a pre-gap hidden trackRead More →

Native & Silencers ZigZag Wanderer 1995 French CD Duos Taratata on Barclay 529509-2 A compilation album of material played on the French TV show ‘Taratata’. It looks like bands were encouraged to play together hence the ‘duos’ part of the album title. The song is actually listed as ‘Zig Zag’. Native is a French soul and funk band, they are two French black sisters Laura and Chris Mayne and The Silencers is a Scottish rock band. This was recorded on February 15th, 1995 and broadcast on March 24th, 1995 on French second channel. You can see a video of this on www.mytaratata.com Thanks to Daniel Mercurin for extra information about this one. NectarineRead More →

Mark Lanegan Band Clear Spot 2003 US CDEP Here Comes That Weird Chill (Methamphetamine Blues, Extras & Oddities) on Beggars Banquet Records Ex-Screaming Trees and Queens Of The Stone Age frontman, Mark Lanegan has put his own band together. Originally intended as a single from the album this release has grown into an 8 track EP of session out-takes that includes a version of ‘Clear Spot’. Thanks to Dave Crunelle for telling me about this one. Andrew Lange Sure Nuff ‘n’ Yes I Do 2008 live (unreleased) Andrew Lange does a fine energetic one-man-band version, playing guitar, bass drum, snare drum and high-hat. It’s on Youtube if you want to take a look.Read More →